It only took him two years and half a dozen GoPro cameras to make it happen, but what a happening.
German journalist and photographer Jonas Ginter used some ingenuity, half a dozen tiny video cameras and a some editing wizardry to create a very interesting look at the world. According to Ginter, his quest for a 360-degree video began when he decided to strap a camera to a turntable and then moved on to trying a series of optical setups using mirrors. He then spent countless hours stitching all the images together in post-production.
And he just didn't like the outcome of any of those methods.
"Piece by piece, I came to the realization that I can create 360 degree videos only when I capture the image in one take," Ginter said. "So the logical conclusion was...many cameras."
So it was back to the drawing board for more experimentation. Ginter then tried mounting all the cameras together with rubber bands, cable ties, wood and finally, polystyrene.
The results were less than satisfying once again, so Ginter turned to some of his pals and 3D printing to come up with a solution.
In constructing the final version of his Go Pro mount with a 3D printer, Ginter chose a template as a base and headed off to Hacker Space Bremen to speak with his friends Andree Brodt and Michael Kotter. The pair joined the project, and what they came up with is nothing short of amazing.
The final mount combines the half dozen GoPro cameras in a precise registration to create an array which allows the images from each device to correctly overlap and cover a field of vision 360 degrees horizontally and 180 degrees vertically.
Granted, the real secret is how Ginter manages to stitch all the footage together to make his incredible clips, but who knows, he might let you in on that if you contact him.
The GoPro cameras themselves are ideally suited to Ginter's application. Each camera is fitted with a nearly "fisheye" lens, and the photographer says the closer the lenses are to each other – and the more overlap produced by each camera – the better the result.
Ginter says the only thing left now after all his hard work is shooting lots of video. He said he can envision his method being used to produce interactive videos for events, cool shots for music or promotional videos and plans to use it to make a time-lapse movie in the next few weeks.
He's also making an offer:
"If you have a great car, a great boat, a nifty horse or a hot air balloon?" Ginter says "Take me with you and I'll film the whole thing with the 360 degree camera."